HomeAatmanirbhar BharatHAL initiates upgrades for 16 operational IOC LCA Tejas Mk1 jets to...

HAL initiates upgrades for 16 operational IOC LCA Tejas Mk1 jets to FOC standard

Source : IgMp Bureau

HAL initiates upgrades for 16 operational IOC LCA Tejas Mk1 jets to FOC standard

Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) has commenced the process of upgrading 16 LCA-Tejas Mk1 jets from the Initial Operational Clearance (IOC) configuration to the Final Operational Clearance (FOC) configuration. This upgrade will introduce several critical enhancements to the aircraft, including:

Enhanced Beyond Visual Range Missile (BVRM) Capabilities

Inclusion of Air-to-Air Refuelling Capability

Integration of Air-to-Ground FOC Earmarked Weapons

Expansion of General Flight Envelope

The Initial Operational Clearance for the LCA-Tejas Mk1 was granted in 2013, following which the first batch of 16 single-seater jets became operational in 2016, forming the No. 45 Squadron IAF Flying Daggers. This squadron played a pivotal role in developing tactical strategies and operational protocols for the new fighter jets, ensuring that future pilots would have well-established Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) and a comprehensive understanding of the aircraft’s capabilities and limitations.

While some of the FOC features will be enabled through software upgrades, others will require physical component upgrades. Additionally, the Indian Air Force (IAF) currently operates 16 FOC LCA-Tejas Mk1 jets, with plans to deploy the upgraded Mk1A fighter jets at Nal Air Base in Bikaner, Rajasthan, later this year. Nal Air Base holds strategic significance due to its proximity to the Pakistan border, making it a crucial location for defense operations.

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